Memorandum of Understanding signed for the Squamish Oceanfront Lands

The District of Squamish and the Squamish Oceanfront Development Corporation (SODC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with a developer to complete a transaction for the Oceanfront Lands. The MOU with Matthews Southwest and Bethel Lands Corporation (MSB) is the culmination of months of negotiations between the groups. Work is now underway on the final agreements.

SODC Rendering2

“Matthews Southwest and Bethel are extremely excited to move towards a transformation of the SODC Lands in the near future. This is a complex development site and it required a lot of effort to create the appropriate transaction deal,” says Jack Matthews, President, Matthews Southwest (MSW). Adds Michael Hutchison, President of Bethel Lands Corporation (Bethel), “We are keen and ready to start the real work on the SODC Lands. We are excited and proud to be delivering the vision of the community on the Oceanfront Lands.”

The highlights of the MOU include:

  • $15 million cash purchase price by MSB for the SODC Lands;
  • A partnership between SODC and MSB; SODC retains a 25% interest in the partnership with no financial risk and a potential to participate in future profits;
  • MSB has committed to building the existing Oceanfront Sub-Area Plan with a 20 year timeframe for development;
  • Development of the SODC Lands is not expected to negatively impact the District’s ability to build and maintain infrastructure and services for the rest of the community;
  • The Purchase and Sale Agreement for the SODC Lands will be completed this summer. The full details of the purchase and sale will be made public at that time.

The MOU is a non-binding agreement that demonstrates a commitment to the principles of the transaction by all parties. The next steps are the completion of a formal and binding Purchase and Sale Agreement as well as the Partnership Agreement between MSB and the SODC. Following the completion of the Purchase and Sale Agreements, MSB and the District will continue work on a number of related agreements regarding project phasing, infrastructure and amenity projects on the property. These agreements will take until spring 2015 to complete. The completion date for the transaction is April 2015.

“The District’s negotiating team has worked hard to deliver the best deal available for the SODC Lands,” says District of Squamish Mayor Rob Kirkham. “The transaction with MSB will eliminate the SODC debt and minimize ongoing risk to the taxpayers of Squamish. We trust that the residents of Squamish will be thrilled that MSB has committed to following the Oceanfront Sub Area Plan. They will start with construction of the Oceanfront Park as soon as possible once the agreements are complete.”

The citizens of Squamish will have ample opportunity to provide input into the various agreements that surround this transaction. Documents such as re-zoning will follow the standard legislative process that includes public hearings.

MSW is a developer whose roots began as a family business in Ontario, is now involved in projects in Canada, the USA and Mexico, and headquartered in Lewisville, Texas. With offices in Dallas, Calgary, and Mississauga, Ontario, MSW has extensive experience in the redevelopment of brownfield sites including Dallas’ South Side Development, and the recent completion of the $1.4 billion Bow development in Calgary.

Bethel is a Squamish-based development company who has been the principal behind a number of mid-sized projects totaling approximately $102 million in the Sea to Sky Corridor over the past decade. Such projects include: Amblepath subdivision, Quest University Residences; Cornerstone Professional Building; Crumpit Woods subdivision; Baxter Creek subdivision (Whistler); and the Sea to Sky Gondola.

View the Oceanfront Marketing Video which provides an overview of the Sub Area Plan. 

June 17, 2014

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  • Rick Ashe Jun 20, 2014, 6:32 PM (7 years ago)

    Good work. Thank you. This will be an important part of the evolution of Squamish in a deliberate way. This will enhance the future of Squamish and be an economic benefit both short and long term. Glad to see it is proceeding. Glad to be a part of the community.

  • howard abbott Jun 18, 2014, 12:37 PM (7 years ago)

    Excuse me . my under standing is the city of Squamish was given a gift of land valued at 20 million . Spent 12 million on the land presumable to improve it and then sold it for 15 million." HELLO" If I understand it correct a 20 million dollar gift has been turned into a 3 million dollar gift. Congratulations to all involved


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